If you’ve been anywhere near a Williams-Sonoma catalog lately, you’ve seen the two-page spread on the Vitamix Professional Series: perhaps the world’s greatest (and most expensive) blender. Known for lasting a lifetime, the Vitamix is a pricey kitchen gadget at $650 for the high-end model, but it’s not like you’re only going to make smoothies with it. You can use this blender to make ice cream, nut butters, dips, soup, rice flour, even cookie dough—if you can dream it, you can blend it. Check out these nine recipes for inspiration, and add a Vitamix to your New Year's wish list. And comparison shop Guide's list of best blenders, three of which are Vitamix blenders.
With fresh apples, brown sugar, and spices, this recipe for applesauce is simple and tasty. Use the Vitamix to get the applesauce to the consistency you want; whether it’s smooth or chunky, you can be sure it'll be good.
Photo and recipe from Boxing Day
2. Harvest Pancakes
Pancakes? From the blender? This recipe for healthy harvest pancakes comes together in only a few minutes. Just throw all the ingredients into the blender (you can substitute with normal all-purpose flour), and flavorful pancakes will be ready for breakfast in no time.
Photo and recipe from Eagle Loft Kitchen
3. Spinach and Artichoke Dip
You can whip up this dip with frozen spinach and canned artichoke hearts, making it the perfect recipe for a last-minute party. Garlic and lemon add a zesty freshness and you can eat this on a crusty baguette or with some crackers. Experiment with seasonings and add in your favorite spices, like cumin.
Photo and recipe from The Fitnessista
4. Sun-Dried Tomato and Rosemary Focaccia
You can make bread in a blender! The Vitamix is one of the only blenders on the market that’s strong enough to tackle bread dough. This recipe has a whole cup of sun-dried tomatoes packed in and you can substitute any of your favorite herbs for the rosemary.
Photo and recipe from Active Tasty Life
5. Broccoli and Cannellini Bean Soup
Soup made with a blender is wonderfully creamy, and this recipe is no exception. With a whole head of broccoli and a can of cannellini beans, you can have dinner on the table in less than an hour and be sure it’s healthy and delectable.
Photo and recipe from Carly's Clean Cuisine
6. Best Hot Chocolate
Another recipe you wouldn’t think of when you’re talking blenders is hot chocolate. This recipe aerates the milk and cocoa mixture for added frothiness that kids love. Be sure to top your mug liberally with marshmallows for the perfect cup.
Photo and recipe from Jodi McKenna
7. Classic Green Smoothie
There’s no way to own a Vitamix and not try your hand at making green smoothies. This version is touted as a beauty detox and is overflowing with antioxidants. Packed with kale, celery, bananas, ginger, apple, and pear, it’s a delicious, good-for-you choice that you won’t regret.
Photo and recipe from Lululemon
8. Apple Cashew Butter
Raw apple cashew butter isn’t something you can easily find in stores and highlights one of the best features of the Vitamix: Blending your own nut butters is a great way to tinker with the proportions of nuts to add-ins. But inventing the perfect ratio takes time—try this recipe and add in your own fruit combinations for extra pizzazz.
Photo and recipe from Delicious Living Nutrition
9. Mango Salsa
This raw mango salsa is a great way to capture the flavors of summer any time of year. Chopped red onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice, and mango are a delicious combination and this is a great appetizer with a bowl full of tortilla chips.
Photo and recipe from Vitamix; header image and recipe also from Vitamix
Caitlin M. O'Shaughnessy is a New York City–based food writer and editor at Penguin who has worked on and recipe-tested several cookbooks. She is currently in search of NYC's best ramen, and is one of the few people who admit to disliking brunch.